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Arabesques : A Tale of Double Lives - Robert Dessaix

Arabesques

A Tale of Double Lives

By: Robert Dessaix

Paperback | 1 July 2017 | Edition Number 2

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One Sunday afternoon in a secluded valley in Normandy, Robert Dessaix chanced upon the castle where the 20th-century French writer André Gide spent his childhood. Recalling the excitement he felt when he first read Gide as a teenager, Dessaix sets off to recapture what it was that once drew him so strongly to this enigmatic figure.

On a magic carpet ride from Lisbon to the edge of the Sahara, from Paris to the south of France and Algiers, he takes us to the places where the Nobel Prize winning author, in ways still scandalous to modern sensibilities, lived out his unconventional ideas about love, marriage, sexuality and religion.

About the Author

Robert Dessaix is a writer of fiction, autobiography and the occasional essay. From 1985 to 1995, after teaching Russian language and literature for many years at the Australian National University and the University of New South Wales, he presented the weekly Books and Writing program on ABC Radio National. In more recent years he has also presented radio series on Australian public intellectuals and great travellers in history, as well as regular programs on language.

His best-known books, all translated into several European languages, are his autobiography A Mother's Disgrace; the novels Night Letters and Corfu; a collection of essays and short stories (and so forth); and the travel memoirs Twilight of Love and Arabesques. In 2012 he published the collection of originally spoken pieces As I Was Saying, and in 2014 the meditation What Days Are For. A full-time writer since 1995, Robert Dessaix lives in Hobart, Tasmania.
Industry Reviews
‘Magical and inviting … these arabesques afford the reader inordinate pleasure.’ Livres-Hebdo

‘Surrender to the ravishments first, get lost, skid with thrilled indecisiveness across the mosaic tile of each page. Venture out with the author onto the roads and dizzying crossroads he negotiates as he plots a course between past and present, old haunts and new horizons, in the lands of Araby …’ The Age

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